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Law Enforcement’s Leadership Role in Juvenile Justice Reform: Actionable Recommendations for Practice & Policy

Published Jul 31, 2014, International Association of Chiefs of Police

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From the National Summit on Law Enforcement Leadership in Juvenile Justice, which the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) convened with support from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, this report sets forth 33 recommendations for concrete actions that law enforcement leaders can take in collaboration with partners at the local, state, and national levels. 

The summit recommendations provide a roadmap for elevating the priority of preventing and addressing juvenile crime, and for responding to young people in more effective and developmentally appropriate ways.  These recommendations were developed during two days of working group deliberations by a multidisciplinary group of 90 participants that included law enforcement executives and officers at various levels, judges, prosecutors, public defenders, young people, parents, policymakers, researchers, mental health service providers, and a range of other juvenile justice stakeholders from across the country. 

The 33 recommendations are divided into eight thematic areas:  making juvenile justice a priority within law enforcement agencies; building partnerships among law enforcement, youth and families; collaboration and information sharing; promoting alternatives to arrest, court referral and detention; data collection and expanding evidence-based and promising initiatives; pathways to school completion; responding to youth with behavioral health conditions and trauma histories; and amplifying law enforcement’s advocacy on juvenile justice reform.


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Models for Change was a juvenile justice systems reform initiative supported by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, website operated by Justice Policy Institute.